Sunday, February 05, 2006

Mark Lemhouse

Great American Yard Sale
Yellow Dog

Review written by Dr. Blues

Lemhouse hold forth with Johnny Cash-like baritone tones and hard driving American jackhammer power. Many vistas flow by the windows of this iron from primitive delta to bluegrassy old time and film noire a la Tom Waits. Parts are very similar in flavor to early Otis Taylor or even Othar Turner's fife and drum bands, albeit with a banjo.

Mark easily rocks with giant rhythmic pulses and twangy, jangly guitar. He says "it's okay to look back as long as you don't stare." The echoes go on deep and prominent in a platter filled with darkness and scintillating patches of light.

Rooted in Oregon, Lemhouse restlessly roams from here to there. From the Hill Country to Texas juking to the north woods or the Great Plains of Greg Brown, ridiculous hilarity, raw bones bitterness and more are fueled by six, slide, pedal and banjo fret artistry. This is sweet, on the balls of the feet American music with honest dark depth, wit and brilliance.

On The Great Beyond planetary scale, this one burns up solidly on Mars.

Printed here with author's permission. Check out Dr. Blues website at


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